Dead Trees

You Think Crash-Landing a Startup Sucks? Try Running a Magazine Into the Ground

Not the business it used to be. (Photo: flickr.com/johnf49)

The sheer churn-and-burn of the startup scene can be grueling: Some hot new company is always ascendant, and some formerly hot new company is always headed for the ash heap of history. Ever wanted to just chuck it all and retreat to the more stable environs of an old-fashioned profession like, say, magazines?

Now, before you begin laughing, its worth first considering this Ad Age paen to this year’s honorees for the magazine’s A-List Awards, which asks, “Would You Rather Own a Magazine or a Digital Startup?” The subtitle clarifies, “That is not a trick question,” and the article goes on to point out that for every Newsweek, there’s a Marie Claire doing a brisk business in ad pages. The conclusion: “You probably won’t read about that on TechCrunch or Mashable, but you’re reading it right here.”

Felix Salmon promptly replied with a long, measured answer that basically amounts to “digital startups for $800, Alex.” Read More